Broadwing Director, Ben Pace Lehner meets with iGaming Capital to discuss the art of boomeranging in the iGaming industry alongside Claudia Ginex, Head of HR at Gaming Innovation Group (GiG), and Lena Nordin, Chief HR Officer at Betsson group.
When it comes to the iGaming industry, what does ‘boomeranging’ actually mean?
The term ‘boomeranging’ is HR jargon that refers to the return of a former employee to an organisation that they had worked for in the past and who may have left for various reasons including a gap year for personal growth, travelling, further education or to pursue other opportunities. It is often the case that an employer may not be able to meet the salary expectations and career progression sought by the employee, which they may need to meet personal obligations such as a bank loan.
More often than not it is the employee that leaves a company only to return later, however it may be the case that an employee must be let go, possibly due to being made redundant, only to be hired back when the organisation is in a better financial state.
Is this something that is frowned upon or encouraged in the industry?
From my experience with Broadwing Job Placement Agency, a Maltese company offering talent acquisition services to the iGaming industry, I could not give a definite answer as to whether it is frowned upon or encouraged as this varies greatly not only between organisations, but also different departments, and even specific roles within the same organisation. The Broadwing team has confirmed this by reaching out to HR managers and personnel working within the iGaming industry, during which we discovered that the biggest contributing factor was the personal preference of senior and HR management.
What are the benefits to the company when a team member boomerangs? And to the employee?
There’s a slew of benefits from an employee returning to a company after a period of absence. The first and most obvious would be that they are already accustomed to the company culture and operations, requiring a much shorter orientation and on-boarding process. This allows them to hit the ground running, as they are able to rely on their previous experience and connections, in addition to a new perspective and more knowledge they may have acquired during their time away from the company. This effect also helps bolster the image of the company as it is often a sign of a strong internal culture, good working conditions and a company that employees can be proud to work for.
Ben’s Boomerang Tip
Whether you’re an employer or an employee, don;t burn bridges. Always do your utmost to leave on good terms and maintain existing relationships. You never know when your former employer, colleague or employee may be of assistance to you in the future and, in the event of an employee returning, they’re more likely to receive a warm welcome and fit right back into the company culture and community.
Could you see this working for industries other than iGaming?
The boomerang effect has already been seen at varying rates in most industries from construction to hospitality and healthcare to name a few. Through our observations, we feel that organisations in the legal and financial services sectors are the least likely to hire a former employee however with the current ‘war for talent’, due to an employment market that favours employees, this is bound to change.
Are there any challenges you have to be aware of related to this?
The on-boarding of a former employee is more often than not a good experience; however, it may also cause some distrust and uncertainty between co-workers, most significantly if their departure was sudden and burdened their colleagues with an additional workload and hard to meet deadlines. Furthermore, co-workers may feel alienated if the person was brought back with a better salary or position than their own, although in most cases situations such as this are avoided by the employer in the first place.
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Any tips for other iGaming companies or iGaming employees when it comes to Boomeranging?
“Don’t burn any bridges” would most certainly be the best piece of advice I could give to employees and employers alike. Always do your utmost to leave on good terms and maintain existing relationships. You never know when your former employer, colleague or employee may be of assistance to you in the future, and in the event of an employee returning, they’re more likely to receive a warm welcome and fit right back in to the company culture and community. I also recommend transparency; tell the employer why you’re leaving, your intentions and mention the possibility of returning to the company when the time is right. This will immediately give you insight into whether it would be possible to boomerang with your employer. On the other hand, I urge employers to do the same in the event an employee needs to be let go. Organisations may also consider adopting a Company Alumni which has become common among large international organisations.